Training camp is just weeks away, and the Minnesota Timberwolves still don’t know whether Kevin Garnett is going to play this coming season. Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor told NBA.com’s Steve Aschburner on Thursday that they’re waiting to hear from Garnett.
“Kevin hasn’t told me or informed me yet if he’s coming back to play or if he isn’t coming back,” Taylor said. “I can only assume I’ll be hearing from him in the next three weeks.”
Garnett turned 40 in May and this would be his 22nd season. He was drafted in 1995, and with the retirement of Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan, there are no active players left in the league from Garnett’s class or the two that followed. Despite his age, Garnett remained an effective defender, midrange jump shooter and rebounder in his 38 appearances for Minnesota last season.
The problem, though, is that he only appeared in 38 games. Garnett is as intense a competitor as they come, and he has apparently relished the chance to mentor the Wolves’ young players, but his knees might not be able to handle the grind of another season.
There is also the matter of loyalty. Minnesota unceremoniously axed Sam Mitchell as interim coach at the end of last season, informing him just before Game 82 that he would not be considered for the full-time role. Mitchell was Garnett’s veteran mentor when the future Hall of Famer came into the league, and the two of them have remained close friends ever since. Last month, Mitchell implied that the way he was dismissed could dissuade Garnett from returning.
Garnett has one year and $8 million left on his contract. He has said that he would like to own the Wolves after retiring.
Source: CBS Sports / Timberwolves still don’t know if Kevin Garnett plans to play again